Far too many students in Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) are being pushed out of school. This is a problemthat is now commonly known as the "school-to-prison pipeline," which occurs when schools rely on punitivediscipline policies to suspend, expel, or refer students to law enforcement. These overly-punitive policies have seriousconsequences. They increase the likelihood of students dropping-out, not graduating, and becoming involvedin the juvenile or criminal justice system. These policies disproportionately impact students of color, students withdisabilities, and LGBTQ and gender non-conforming students. In an effort to begin creating change in Alexandria,we have researched the data and policies in ACPS and written this report, to encourage positive changes thatsupport our youth, rather than criminalize them.
This report contains a timeline of our work to implement restorative justice, an analysis of the suspension andreferral to law enforcement data from the 2014-15 school year, and a list of recommendations to end harsh schooldiscipline in ACPS. Out of a sense of urgency for the youth in our community, we call on ACPS to consider the information in this report and fully and immediately commit to proper implementation of restorative justice and an endto the school-to-prison pipeline. We cannot risk the future of our young people while ACPS continues to stall on theimplementation of restorative justice.